Soulseek is an ad-free, spyware free, just plain free file sharing network for Windows, Mac and Linux. Our rooms, search engine and search correlation system make it easy for you to find people with similar interests, and make new discoveries!
Soulseek Technical Discussion–Google Groups
Welcome to the official Soulseek technical discussion group!
Please keep chatter focused on technical discussion of the Soulseek client and software environment.
If you’re posting about a problem with the client, please specify whether you’re using SoulseekQt or Soulseek NS (no longer supported), the client build number (should appear at the top of the client application window), and what operating system you’re on.
Download Utopia: A 17-Year-Old File-Sharing Program Is Still the Best Place to Find Obscure Music
Soulseek is the creation of Nir Arbel, a programmer who worked on the development team behind the original release of Napster, and it functions in similar ways. What started in 1999 as a means of trading techno and dance tracks grew to encompass rare and obscure music of all genres, slowly becoming an audiophile’s paradise. Vinyl rips of unknown soul groups? Cassette-only harsh noise? Rare compilations from a long-dead black metal label? It’s all there. You can also download the new Justin Bieber album, but with a glut of legal ways to listen to Purpose, it’s certainly not where Soulseek shines.
The mid 2000s also saw second generation P2Ps and early Bittorrent indexes land in the crosshairs of trade organizations like the RIAA —and the majority went belly-up. Their replacements were blogs that used file storage services like Megaupload and Rapidshare to disseminate obscure music, and Grooveshark-style unsanctioned streaming sites for more populist tastes. By 2012, Megaupload had been taken to court, Rapidshare was neutered, and niche blogs had no reliable way to share their prized collections. Between 2014 and 2015 just about every streaming service that wasn’t legally buttoned up either shut down or was acquired and revived under corporate auspices. Sexier options and a split in the core client meant Soulseek’s user base declined significantly during this time, but it wasn’t enough to fell it completely.
Soulseek isn’t the only P2P to survive these major crackdowns, but where single source P2Ps are concerned, it essentially stands alone—a living fossil. Former competitors that still receive software updates are prohibitively difficult for many users to configure, have transitioned away from their old protocols to become Bittorrent-only, or are virtual ghost towns.